And here we have to say that Newton was a lot clearer about the status
of what he called "axioms" and "laws" of motion than were later
generations who looked on them as universal, and perhaps providential,
truths about the cosmos. It took Henri Poincaré's hard work and
careful analysis to bring out the fact that what was perhaps the most
promising candidate of the three laws for empirical status and
testable content, the Second Law -- nowadays rendered as "Force equals
mass times acceleration," -- was not in fact a testable, falsifiable
claim about the cosmos or the things in it. Poincaré showed that there
was no way of measuring each of the three components, the force, the
mass and the acceleration independently in any concrete situation and
that therefore no experiment could bring the law to the test. And so
too for the other two of Newton's three "laws" of dynamics.

CB: This sounds like quantum mechanics .

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